Maggie’s Oldham applies for planning permission

Maggies centre TROH
Maggie’s Oldham applies for planning permission
05 October 2015

Maggie’s, the charity that provides free practical, emotional and social support for people with cancer and their family and friends has applied for planning permission to bring a Maggie’s Centre to Oldham. Built within the grounds of The Royal Oldham Hospital, the new Centre will complement the excellent clinical care offered by the hospital and will be the charity’s second Centre in Greater Manchester, following in the footsteps of Maggie’s at The Christie.

Maggie’s Oldham has been made possible by the enormous generosity of the Stoller Charitable Trust, which has fully funded the Centre. Norman Stoller, CBE, CStJ, DL, of The Stoller Charitable Trust and principal donor adds “Across Greater Manchester we are lucky to have the highest standard of treatment and care for cancer. I am proud to have helped complete the funding of Maggie’s at The Christie and also to support the building of Maggie’s Oldham, which alongside Maggie’s at The Christie, will offer support to complement this excellent medical care and ensure that Greater Manchester is truly a world leader in cancer care.”

Maggie’s Oldham has been designed by dRMM, an international studio of architects and designers, whose projects include the Tower of Love Festival Headland in Blackpool, Rundeskogen in Norway (with Helen & Hard Architects), WoodBlock House and Kingsdale School in London. The studio is renowned for creating architecture that is innovative, high quality and socially useful and will use this expertise and experience to create the calm, uplifting environment so important to the people who visit and work in Maggie’s Centres.

Maggie’s Chief Executive, Laura Lee said, “A cancer diagnosis and treatment brings with it tough questions and difficult emotions which can leave many feeling isolated. The programme of support that we will be offering at Maggie’s Oldham will help to improve the physical and emotional wellbeing of people with cancer across the region.

“We’re absolutely thrilled to be working with the Royal Oldham Hospital and dRMM Architects on this project. The Centre, designed by dRMM is built around a sloping garden, offering rooms full of light and garden views creating a calm and uplifting environment for everyone that visits the Centre.

“Maggie’s Oldham will be our second in the North West following in the footsteps of Maggie’s at The Christie which is due to open in early 2016. Submitting our planning application is an exciting step forward in bringing a Maggie’s Centre to Oldham and in fulfilling our ambition to provide the highest quality cancer support to the people of the North West.” 

Dr Roger Prudham, Consultant, Deputy Medical Director and Cancer Lead Clinician at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said, ‘As Trust lead cancer clinician I would like to express my delight and excitement at the development of a Maggie’s Centre at The Royal Oldham Hospital.  This building will offer patients, carers and staff something entirely different to any of our existing facilities.  It is designed around the needs of people rather than the technical function of our clinical facilities.  Experiences for families dealing with cancer will be improved with the generous provision of this unique building, complementing the investment that the trust and The Christie have made in cancer services for the population we serve.’

Alex de Rijke, Director of dRMM Architects comments: “We’re delighted and proud to be designing Maggie’s Oldham; a special place offering help, hope and inspiration to thousands of people with cancer.”

John Wilkes, Director of Support Services at The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust said, ‘We are delighted to be working with Maggie’s and their design team on creating such an iconic building. As the Trust prepares to develop The Royal Oldham Hospital further, this building and landscaping will enhance an area at the front of the site that will benefit patients, visitors and staff.’

Building description from dRMM Architects

A Maggie’s Centre can be likened to a house; ours is a house full of surprises. The building hovers over a sloping garden, supported on very slender columns. The garden offers ‘open air rooms’ framed by pine and birch trees, with a reflecting pool of rainwater discovered underneath the building.

From this central oasis trees grow up through the building, bringing nature into the interior. The building is about content, not form. On entering the deliberately simple timber box over a bridge, the visitor is confronted with a light-filled void of trees and unexpected simultaneous views down to the garden pool below, up to the sky, and out to the Pennine horizon.

The need for both privacy and collectivity is respectively met with discreet meeting rooms and niches carved from a ‘thick’ wall, and the otherwise completely open interior space, planned around the central lightwell. The materials are timber, glass and the outside presence and colours of the garden inside.

-ends-

For further information please contact Laura West on

laura.west@maggiescentres.org and 020 7386 3518

Notes to Editors

About Maggie’s

  • Maggie’s offers free practical, emotional and social support to people with cancer and their family and friends. Built in the grounds of specialist NHS cancer hospitals, Maggie’s Centres are warm and welcoming places, with qualified professionals on hand to offer a programme of support that has been shown to improve physical and emotional wellbeing.
  • Great architecture is vital to the care Maggie’s offers; and to achieve that Maggie’s works with great architects like Zaha Hadid, Richard Rogers and Norman Foster, whose expertise and experience deliver the calm, uplifting environments that are so important to the people who visit and work in the Centres.
  • The first Maggie’s Centre opened in Edinburgh in 1996. There are now 18 Centres across the UK, online and abroad, with more planned for the future.
  • 2016 marks Maggie’s 20th anniversary
  • Maggie’s President is HRH The Duchess of Cornwall.
  • For further information about Maggie’s please go to maggiescentres.org